Putting Education Reform To The Test

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Social Media Helps Florida Teachers Connect, Inspire And Hone Their Craft

Lutz Elementary School teacher Mike Meiczinger noticed some parents weren’t using the class web site to keep track of what their students were doing. So Meiczinger signed up for Twitter as another way to keep in touch. He still feels like a novice, but Meiczinger sees it as an instant messaging service for parents. “I […]

Opting Out Of FCAT Can Have Consequences

Monday we told you about activists who are educating parents about what their options are when it comes to FCAT exams. While state law doesn’t allow parents to withhold their children from the exam, the law does outline alternatives to required tests. But opting out might still come with some consequences. A parent forwarded us […]

Sound Off: Deadline Is Tomorrow For Comments On Florida’s K-12 Standards

If you’ve got concerns about Florida’s K-12 math, English and literacy standards — or a suggestion about how to improve them — you’ve got until tomorrow to submit them to the Florida Department of Education. The agency is gathering feedback at the request of Gov. Rick Scott. So far the agency has received more than […]

Hillsborough County’s Parent University Is Back In Session

School is back in session, and so is Parent University. Parent University is a partnership between the Alliance for Public Schools and the Hillsborough County school district. Parents can take classes to learn more about district school choice offerings, the transition to middle or high school and how to find financial aid for college. Some […]

Parent University Provides A Lesson On New Common Core Standards

The small group of parents hovered over a list of words, deciding where to sort “cloud,” “photosynthesis,” and “google.”  They paid particular attention to words indicating facts, evidence or conclusions. Words such as analyze, convince or insight. Students will use these words to support their conclusions, analysis and opinions. “This is the key category,” said […]

New Yorkers Sound Off On New State Exams

A professor at Teacher’s College, Columbia University has set up a website to allow New York students, parents and educators to post comments about the new state English language arts test. The tests are now tied to Common Core education standards adopted by 45 states — including Florida. New York students have been taking the […]

Why Parents Could Get More Control Over Their Child’s Special Education Plan

Right now, schools determine whether to move a student into special education classes. But a proposed bill in Tallahassee would give parents of children with special needs more power over their education. Fort Lauderdale 6th grader Mariah Harris has Down syndrome, and she wants to be a veterinary technician. “My dream is to go to […]

The Secret Lives of Students: When School Rules Conflict with Home Rules

Editor’s note: We’re launching a new series for the next month, asking students to tell us what life is like in Florida schools.

The students are part of Breakthrough Miami, which runs programs in the summer and during the school year for students in elementary, middle and high schools.

Explaining The Creeping Cost Of Missing School

As many as 15 million students are missing at least one in 10 days of school every year, reducing their chance of graduating from high school or college. That’s according to a new report from GetSchooled.org and researchers at Johns Hopkins University. At a weekend education conference in Philadelphia, GetSchooled and other experts cited three […]

Parents Requested School Not Acknowledge Trayvon Martin’s Death, School District Says

This morning, the chief communications director for the Miami-Dade County school district, John Schuster said there is a reason the school did not announce Martin’s death on campus. “Shortly after Trayvon’s death, his parents asked the school’s principal for privacy in the matter,” Schuster said. “So counselors couldn’t do what they normally do. They couldn’t […]

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